Human Rights and Inequality Colloquium on the Future of Work

We are excited to introduce our Fall 2020 Colloquium, “Inequality, Labor, and Human Rights: The Future of Work in the Age of Pandemic.” It is part of a new inter-disciplinary and cross-campus Pop-Up Institute, “Beyond the Future of Work: New Paradigms for Addressing Global Inequality,” supported by the Office of the Vice President for Research.

Over the past decade, concerns about the “future of work” have preoccupied scholars, policymakers, NGOS, and international organizations. Many forecast massive job displacement caused by advances in automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, and digitization. As formal labor’s share of national income continues to shrink around the world, informal employment, underemployment, and non-waged work increasingly characterize the lives of many. Silicon Valley tycoons, Marxist critics, far-right populists, and even a long-shot U.S. presidential candidate have all predicted the end of work as we know it. Soaring rates of unemployment resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic confirm even the gloomiest prognoses, albeit for different reasons than anticipated.

Our Fall 2020 Colloquium presents an interdisciplinary group of scholars who will explore these and other prognoses of the future of work as well as proposals for responding to them, in light of deeply entrenched inequality within and across countries.

For more information, see the Rapoport Center's Fall 2020 Colloquium page.

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